In a recent development, the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) asked the BCCI to forfeit the series. However, the BCCI argued against it and expressed its willingness to play the 5th Test at Manchester. According to sources, BCCI was in touch with the team management and senior cricketers regarding the same. Team India skipper Virat Kohli and his deputy Rohit Sharma were not in favour of forfeiting the match – even if it meant playing the game under the Covid cloud.
According to a report in Times of India, if India accepted ECB's demand of cancelling the final Test match, they would have to give England a walkover in such a scenario. The situation arose when another Indian support staff tested positive for Covid-19 after head coach Ravi Shastri and bowling coach Bharath Arun. India are currently 2-1 up and forfeiting this game would have meant that the series gets drawn 2-2.
“Virat and Rohit are learnt to have conveyed that, in absolute clear terms, that Indian team would not forfeit the match even if that meant playing it under Covid cloud,” TOI report said.
Earlier, according to news agency PTI, BCCI chairman Sourav Ganguly, had said: "We don't know if the match will happen at the moment. Hopefully we can get some game." The former India all-rounder was speaking at a book launch in Kolkata.
India cancel training because of Covid case
On Tuesday, India cancelled their optional training session after another positive Covid-19 Test result among the coaching staff. India cricket team’s junior physio Yogesh Parmar tested positive for COVID-19. As a result, players were told to stay in their hotel rooms.
The fifth and final Test is scheduled to start at Emirates Old Trafford on Friday. The players will then immediately leave to play in the second leg of Indian Premier League, which starts from 19 September.